Why Aren’t I Seeing Success With My Email Newsletter?

As freelance writers, most of us blog as a way to generate traffic and showcase our own content. If that’s the case, your goal is probably to keep your readers coming back and recommending your work…right?

Like most of you, I was an avid blog reader long before I was a blog writer. Over the years, I have subscribed to hundreds of blogs. Some I stuck with and some I discarded along the way.

Why Aren’t I Seeing Success With My Email Newsletter?

Your goal is to keep your readers coming back and recommending your freelance work

While there are a lot of marketing experts out there who can give you great tips for attracting readers, a lot of them don’t remember what it was like to actually be a reader. At least not the kind that spends several hours a day reading content and looking for new blogs to follow.

I do! Like a lot of you, I am a researcher at heart. Unfortunately for us, sometimes we stay so busy reading other people’s content, that we don’t get around to writing our own and promoting our newsletter.

An email list to a freelance writers is important for growing your blog and reaching a bigger audience. Let’s look at five reasons why you’re not having much success with your list.

1. Not Having a Prominent Subscriber Box

This seems like a no-brainer, but I can’t tell you how many times I have found an amazing blog that I didn’t want to forget about and had to scour their site for a place to subscribe.

Most readers will move on after reading a couple of articles and never remember the name of the site the next time they are looking for information. But if they are receiving email updates from you, they will keep returning.

As avid internet users, I think we take for granted the fact  we know of many ways to clip that information, but the average reader doesn’t necessarily take the time to figure that out.

2. Making it Difficult to Unsubscribe

That’s right! Sounds counterintuitive, right? I mean, why would you want to make it easy for them to unsubscribe if you want to keep them?

Well, remember that time you got an interest in gardening or (insert your random interest here)? You subscribed to the newsletter, read a couple of emails, and then lost interest. You clicked unsubscribe, which took you to a page that asked you to sign in to change your preferences. Did you:

a) go through all the hassle of entering all your information again to retrieve your forgotten password or

b) hit “spam” so you would never have to deal with that person’s email again?


Now you see where I’m headed? Getting “spammed” by readers not only hurts your email account status, but it also makes it unlikely  they will receive your material if they ever regain interest and sign up again. Most people will never remember  they sent you to their junk folder. Check out your account and make sure your unsubscribe process is seamless.

3. Sending Too Many Emails

Not too long ago, I was subscribed to a prominent internet guru’s blog and received two to three emails a day. And no, I am NOT exaggerating! This person even advocated this in their marketing manual along with writing a Facebook post more than twice a day.

You want to keep your website on your readers’ minds, but you don’t want to drive them crazy! It didn’t take me long to unsubscribe to everything this person wrote.

4. Not Sending Enough Emails

I have also subscribed to a blog only to receive an email a month or two later. Nine times out of ten, when this happens, I don’t remember signing up, and rather than take too much time trying to figure out what they have to say, I will just delete and unsubscribe.

So, what’s the sweet spot with emails?

Even though I know there are many marketing wizards out there that know a ton more than I do, as a reader, I prefer to get no more than a couple of emails a week from any particular blog. Maybe three if they have some really great new content.

5. ‘Talking Down’ to Your Readers

Nothing makes me click away from a blog faster than reading a “preachy” post or a post that portrays that person as having no problems or issues. I don’t mean you have to air your dirty laundry on the web. I’m just saying that if you give someone advice about handling a serious issue, try to let them know you’ve been there too, or that you can relate to their situation in some way.

We all really just want to be validated and feel like we’re not alone in our problems.

We can all learn a lot from stepping back from time to time and standing in our readers’ or customers’ shoes. I hope this gives you something to think about that maybe you haven’t considered in a while. Do you still take time each week to read other people’s content that you admire? Why or why not?

Cheri Read is a Christian blogger, freelance writer, single mom, and lover of all things Texas. She is passionate about helping women find their callings and pursuing their dreams with all their hearts. You can find her blogging over at

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Thanks Elna! I think once a week is a great number of emails to send out. It’s enough to keep your name in front of your subscribers, but not so much as to overwhelm them.Reply to Cheri
Cheri, What a great post. Not many freelance writers are even thinking about growing their blog audience. Having a newsletter is a great way to achieve this. I started my newsletter about three months after starting my blog. At that time I was sending out a newsletter 1x a month, but I learned I wasn’t sending enough emails! So, now I typically do weekly emails, which seems to be better for keeping my audience happy and informed.Reply to Elna